Chapter 27, Part 1: Bread Week is for the Undead

The Hare and the Hedgehog Coffee Shop

Alice

“You’re moping,” Ben observed.

“I am not moping,” Alice huffed. “I just don’t want to talk about it. Or him.”

Dumping her empty espresso cup on her way out of the Hare and Hedgehog, Alice rubbed her tired eyes. Even though the In Between Inn gave out free meals, it came with a side of interrogation, leaving Alice with no choice but to get up two hours early and trudge across town for her coffee. 

What kind of sims, even supernatural ones, asked for a minute-by-minute replay of a night out?

Do you want me to start with the part where I happily let him put his hands down my pants or the part where he accidentally whispered his dead wife’s name? Alice thought bitterly. 

She could feel Ben angling to make a comment.

“Come on,” she declared, “Let’s go check in and see what fresh baking hell awaits us.”

Straud Manor

William

“I need a place that sells easels,” Vlad demanded. “And an axe…preferably dipped in hydra blood. You know witches, don’t you?”

William coughed and nearly spit out his coffee. “What are you on about?”

“Hiring a witch, William, keep up! Caleb is off doing sages knows what. You’re my next best choice. The blood of hydra doesn’t just appear on an axe by itself.”

It was times like these that William was thankful he didn’t have a pulse to give him away. Tobias always told him that keeping secrets was still manipulation. It was not until now that William was beginning to agree. Was he helping or manipulating? Guilt had made him begin to doubt himself.

“What earthly reason could you have to for an axe dipped in hydra blood? And an easel?” William asked, stalling while he tried to get his thoughts back into some kind order. “What are you—?”

“Romance,” Vlad snapped, cutting him off. “It’s called romance.”

As Vlad disappeared in a cloud of black smoke, William leaned back in his chair and contemplated offering himself up to one of the local bands of vampire slayers. 

A true death had to be better than dealing with all of this.

The Von Haunt Estate

Alice

“Folks, this week we are talking BREAD. B-R-E-A-D! It’s the best of all the weeks and we can’t wait to kick it off with you!” Rory announced. “First up, your signature dish! Something special from your own recipe store that will wow the judges and knock their socks off!”

With his brightly colored suit and arms spread wide, Alice thought Rory looked kind of like a half-plucked peacock preparing for flight. Why did he need to spell out the word bread? 

Today was the real start of competition. No more practice rounds. Alice looked around at her cast mates, making note of their behaviors:

Dylan was anxiously covering his face and reciting measurements under his breath, Giancarlo was making eyes at the judge, Jimena was reviewing selfies with Rory, and Bailee was watching Deacon dig into a batch of her homemade cookies.

“You’ll have today to prep your recipes,” Summer, explained. She was the only producer who smiled. “Then we’ll meet back here tomorrow for filming. Also, please check your time slot for your confessionals! We’ll need that footage when we cut the episode together.”

Jimena was, of course, in rare form. “I love baking bread! It’s so soothing! I can’t wait to hear everyone’s recipe ideas. Alice, what stale block of carbohydrates are you planning to throw together?”

Even though Alice gave her the finger(s), she did worry.

“What’s the plan?” she hissed, once she and Ben were alone. “And don’t say magic. That shit is making me nauseous and I can’t be having cupcakes pop out of the sky on camera.”

“Good point,” Ben surmised.

“I just wish I knew someone who actually baked,” Alice complained. “Everything Contessa’s chef gave me is way too fancy to pull out this early in the game.”

“We could get a family recipe.”

Alice rolled her eyes. “I am not calling my family. Mom’s saying is “box mix or bust.”

“Well, actually, it’s: I’m the world’s foremost research scientist on momentum conservation and cloning, and I don’t have time for that so ask your father.

Alice laughed. That was a more accurate portrayal of Valeria Martin. 

“But we don’t have to get a family recipe from your family. And no one said the family member had to be alive.”

    6 comments
  • Dolly Llama
    April 27, 2020

    Oh damn—this chapter is fantastic. The rapid-fire jokes had me smiling the whole time. Alice’s flashbacks are the best and so is her reassuring Agnes that she’s technically not *currently* in jail, followed by “oh btw I’m a Wendigo.” With a murder-stoner basement? Is your goal to make all the women in this universe totally awesome?

    Let me join you in commiserating that this series isn’t more popular, because it damn well deserves to be. All the little twists and tidbits and details are so satisfying.

    • feroshgirl
      April 28, 2020

      I’m glad you enjoyed them! Whenever I’m writing jokes I’m like: am I only the one who thinks this is funny? Man, I’ve been reworking Alice’s jail stint for awhile. Originally, I was going to have her start there in chapter 1, but I wanted her badassery to be a slow reveal. Speaking of which, yes, 100% my goal is that every woman is bad as hell and in command of her own shit. In this Universe, the dudes are playing catch up. Wendingo Agnes is personal goals: Grandma chic fashionista on the top, murder stoner on the bottom lol. Overall, I am really proud of this chapter!

      I read so many simlit stories that blow my mind they’re so good and I’m always like: how is no one reading this? But also, there is so much out there and I don’t know how anyone can keep up. I guess you need a reading group or to be active in the forums? But so much of my work life is being a public nerd, I can’t manage it for my personal life too. I do always try to leave comments and likes on the things I read because I value that, but I realize that isn’t everyone’s thing. On a good day, I’m like: I write for myself! I create for myself! On a not so good day I’m like: why do I spend so much time on this? Honestly though, just knowing a few people enjoy it means a lot and frankly, your feedback is worth so much.

      • Dolly Llama
        April 29, 2020

        Be proud! I think you’ve written enough to be in the word count range for a novel. “Oops, I accidentally wrote a novel” is a life achievement.

        What stories do you recommend, btw?

        And being a nerd all the time? Hmm? What’s that like? Sounds hysteretic.

  • lonecat82
    June 2, 2020

    I completely agree with the comments above. As I read this story, I’m like… wow, how doesn’t this have more likes or followers? I’m always blown away by your writing and your humor is spot on. I crack up every chapter. I have those same thoughts when I write, I’m always thinking to myself, is this funny or entertaining to anyone besides myself? But then I tell myself, screw it, I enjoy it, so I’ll just keep writing.
    I also like that you include several types of mythological creatures from different cultures. When I heard Agnes was a Wendigo, I geeked out and was like yes, a freaking Wendigo! I was totally not seeing that, but Agnes is awesome, murder basement and all.

    • feroshgirl
      June 4, 2020

      Thank you! AGNES BEING A WENDIGO IS MY FAVORITE PART lol. I play a lot of D&D so I wanted mythical creatures that went beyond just witches, vampires, and werewolves, even if for cc reasons, I mostly have to reference people in their “human” form.

      Glad to know I’m not alone on the :”is this funny?” question. Some days I am better at it than others, but I do believe in my heart that you’ve gotta write for yourself and what you enjoy. And I’m a weirdo with a dark heart and a love for villains 🙂

      Over the moon that you’re enjoying the story!

  • theplumbob
    July 9, 2020

    Aww, I’ve always had a soft spot for Ms Crumplebottom, I’m glad Alice has an ally of sorts in her now.

    Vlad, such a romantic lol. I see what you’re doing there, him dressing up all colourful and her in a black formal dress. I have high hopes this will not be wasted because I want to see Vlad’s jaw drop when he sees her! 😊

    You should definitely have more readers, though these things take a weirdly long time – I gather this story started last September? I think simlit is not as popular as it once was in general, I was pretty active in simlit 4-3 years ago and have only recently gotten into writing and reading it again (hence how I stumbled across your story), and the forums are a lot quieter these days I think. I did pop into your forum thread the other day to make some approving noises, I’m sure I will again but I don’t want to be talking to myself 😆 I have a feeling I’m catching up though, so rest assured when you launch season three I’ll be back in your thread with pom poms at the ready 🥰

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